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Biden Drops ‘Creator’ When Describing How He Cited Declaration to Putin: ‘We Hold These Truths Self-Evident…’

By Terence P. Jeffrey | June 16, 2021 | 3:47pm EDT
(Screen Capture)
(Screen Capture)

At a press conference today after his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva, Switzerland, President Joe Biden said he explained America’s commitment to human rights to Putin while referencing the “idea” articulated in the Declaration of Independence.

But while referencing the language and idea of the Declaration at his press conference, Biden left out any reference to the Creator.

The Declaration of Independence says: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

“We don’t derive our rights from the government. We possess them because we are born, period. And we yield them to a government,” Biden said at one point in his description of his discussion with Putin.

“The idea is: We hold these truths self-evident, that all men and women. We haven’t lived up to it completely, but we’ve always widen the arc of commitment and included more and more people,” Biden explained later in the press conference.

“I also told him that no president of the United States could keep faith with the American people if they did not speak out to defend our democratic values, to stand up for the universal and fundamental freedoms that all men and women have in our view,” Biden said in describing his conversation with Putin.

“That’s just part of the DNA of our country,” he continued.

“So, human rights is going to always be on the table, I told him,” Biden said. “It’s not just about going after Russia when they violate human rights. It’s about who we are.

“How could I be the president of the United States of America and not speak out against the violation of human rights,” Biden said.

“I told him that unlike other countries—including Russia—we are uniquely a product of an idea. You have heard me say this before, again and again.  I’m going to keep saying it,” Biden said.

“What’s that idea?” Biden asked rhetorically.

“We don’t derive our rights from the government. We possess them because we are born, period. And we yield them to a government,” Biden said.

“So, [at] the forum, I pointed out to him that’s why we are going to raise our concerns about cases like Alexei Navalny [whom the Congressional Research Service says is an imprisoned Russian ‘anti-corruption activist’],” Biden said.

“I made it clear to President Putin that we’ll continue to raise issues of fundamental human rights because that’s what we are. That’s who we are,” said Biden.

“The idea is: We hold these truths self-evident, that all men and women. We haven’t lived up to it completely, but we’ve always widen the arc of commitment and included more and more people,” said Biden.

Here is a transcript of the part of Biden’s press conference where he referenced the Declaration of Independence:

President Joe Biden: “I also told him that no president of the United States could keep faith with the American people if they did not speak out to defend our democratic values, to stand up for the universal and fundamental freedoms that all men and women have in our view. That’s just part of the DNA of our country. So, human rights is going to always be on the table, I told him. It’s not about just going after Russia when they violate human rights. It’s about who we are. How could I be the president of the United States of America and not speak out against the violation of human rights. I told him that unlike other countries—including Russia—we are uniquely a product of an idea. You have heard me say this before, again and again.  I’m going to keep saying it.

“What’s that idea? We don’t derive our rights from the government. We possess them because we are born, period. And we yield them to a government. So, [at] the forum, I pointed out to him that’s why we are going to raise our concerns about cases like Alexei Navalny. I made it clear to President Putin that we’ll continue to raise issues of fundamental human rights because that’s what we are. That’s who we are. The idea is: We hold these truths self-evident, that all men and women. We haven’t lived up to it completely, but we’ve always widened the arc of commitment and included more and more people.”

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